At the end of October, I visited Montréal for the first time. Given its European flair with a Canadian twist, it had been on my travel list for a long time, so I was excited when Montréal Tourism asked me to showcase the experiential luxury aspect of the beautiful city. I arrived late night from Seattle, so my first stop was the hotel — Hôtel Le Crystal, a 12-story luxury boutique hotel in downtown Montréal within reach of many restaurants, cafes, shopping, etc. With 131 non-smoking rooms in such an ideal location, it is the preferred hotel for many business travelers. I loved that it was nestled in the heart of the city, so I was able to walk everywhere and truly soak up the splendor of the city.
-Both check-in and check-out were a breeze. I’m not a happy camper if I have to wait to check-in/check-out.
-The moment I walked in I was greeted by my name — love this personalized touch!
-As far as first impressions go, I was welcomed by a beautiful crystal chandelier in the lobby — that hit me right where I live given my love for chandeliers.
-The location is perfect — nestled in the very heart of downtown Montreal, in close proximity to tons of shopping, restaurants, bars, parks, etc.
-Nespresso machines are always a plus! But there’s also a Starbucks conveniently located in the lobby.
-The room was very spacious and comfortable — all the rooms in the hotel are suites.
-The city views from the room were beautiful!
-The lovely curtains weren’t solely for show and managed to perfectly block out the morning sunlight, making it easier for me to sleep in — a MUST on vacation.
-Loved the understated palette of neutrals and pops of dark red dotted throughout the property.
-The bedding was as luxurious as can be, with a surfeit of fluffy pillows.
-A state-of-the-art fitness facility was available on property.
-There was a NORMAL hair dryer that was actually functional.
-The toiletries were a new brand that I hadn’t heard of — Oneka. I love discovering new products, but I wasn’t a fan.
-WiFi is complimentary and works well — yes!
-Room service was very quick and efficient, but only runs from 6:30a to 11p.
-Lots of outlets near the bed — perfect for digital travelers.
-Loved that the bathtub was separate from the standing shower.
-Breakfast was included.
-There’s a beautiful spa on property, but I didn’t have a chance to check it out.
-There was no personalized welcome note — this small gesture goes a long way.
-Water is not complimentary, and that’s not music to my ears.
-The lighting in the bathroom was very harsh and not ideal for vanity purposes.
-No email or social media activity before, during, or after my stay — this could have elevated the guest experience much more.
-There’s no house car for guest use.
-There’s no full-length mirror.
-The shower’s hot water was lukewarm at best and I had someone take a look at it and was told that’s how it is. Really?!
-There was no turn-down service.
Duration: 2 nights, October 30-November 1, 2015
Bottom line: Given its location, vibe, and amenities, it largely caters to the business traveler. Though it’s touted as a five-star hotel, I don’t agree with that designation because there were a few key service-oriented things that missed the mark for me. I loved the location and the overall experience was comfortable, but not stellar, and for that, Hotel Le Crystal is not likely to be my luxury hotel of choice in Montréal.
*Disclosure: I was a guest of the hotel, but views are my own and accurately reflect my stay. My room was a one-bedroom suite in room 712.
**My policy: there will always be full disclosure about whether my stay was hosted by the hotel or paid for with my own money. And even if the hotel decides to offer complimentary services, my review will never be swayed one way or the other. After all, if my experience was sub-par, and I continue to falsely rave about their services, no one will benefit–not me, not you, not the hotel (they’ll never improve!). So, trust that you’ll receive 100% truth in every review.